Today was meltdown city at the library. Our typical Thursday routine involves heading out tot he library about 10am. We are usually one of the first families to arrive at the library and the kids have plenty of time to look for books, videos and talk to the librarian. The usually help in the set up of the story time area and know a little about what will happen before everyone arrives. Then Crash participates independently in all the activities. A pretty fun Thursday for all.
Today, we were running late. So late in fact that story time had already begun. I sent Crash and his brother ahead while I returned books. All of a sudden I hear a loud scream and tears coming from Crash who is hysterically screaming for mom (who happens to be 50 ft. away at the book return).
Because the library has been going so smoothly for so long, I assumed he was hurt or something bad had happened. Why else would Crash be screaming minutes after we arrived?? After looking quickly around, I noticed the children sitting on the floor instead of the usual risers. Crash, unfamiliar with this set up, had no idea what to do to join the group, and lacks the skills to ask. It took about 10 minutes, but he had finally calmed down enough to rejoin the group after the assistant helped him with the new seating arrangement.
After a couple stories, we went outside for a game. Again, I hear a loud scream and Crash reduced to tears. His anxiety level was still high from the previous incident (so it doesn't take much to set him off), come to find out he didn't know how to play the game. The librarian explained it, but when Crash gets worked up, he tends to tune out the rest of the world or retreat within himself. When he was younger, he would actually fall asleep in the middle of any stress provoking situation. So, we just sat on the side and watched and worked on using some deep calming pressure.
I was just amazed at how I get myself into routines that I don't even realize. Things are so much easier for Crash when they are predictable and he has time to adjust. I am sure they are easier for me as well, which makes it hard to purposely shake things up. But, I need to do a little more shaking and keep rocking his boat to help him learn to adjust to the things life throws at you.
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